a welcome to nhk world "newsline," i'm gene otani in tokyo. north korean officials have reassured their japanese counterparts that they remain committed to their investigation. they'll probe the fate of japanese people abducted by the north. and they stay it will be done in line with the joint agreement. officials from both nations met in beijing. envoys from the north outlined the makeup and authority on a special committee on the
abducti abductions. north korea's envoy for normalizing relations with japan says the two sides have agreed to prepare to implement the agreement they reached in sweden back in may. >> translator: the folks were practical and everyone involved was cooperative on how we should prepare for and carry out the agreement. >> the north is expected to make the final decision. japan's government will decide on thursday whether to lift some sanctions on pyongyang. the former prime minister spoke after being briefed on tuesday's talks with north korea. >> translator: relevant cabinet ministers will meet on thursday to study the explanations offered by north korea. and will decide how we should
react to the issues including the missile launches. >> the north korean dwell delegates reportedly offered -- panel leader and members and on the panel leader and members and how the investigation will proceed. japan's prime minister shinzo abe has been briefed on the -- the cabinet approved the change on tuesday, it means japan could send its forces to aid an ally under armed attack.
past administrations have previewed the war constitution. the approval of the new interpretation does not allow the country's sdf or self-defense forces to act. >> translator: japan's rights to the use of force must be limited to times there is no alternative. the-degree of force used must be the minimum necessary. the cabinet's approval changes nothing of the basic interpretation of the constitution. >> members of the defense ministry launched a committee to begin discussing necessary legislation. defense minister heads the group made up of senior officials of the ministry and the sdf. deputy chief cabinet secretary said the government has set up a team of some 30 people from relevant ministries to determine what laws are needed. he said a team will work under the national security council.
the government also plans to speed up interpretation with the united states. the frame work is due for review by the end of this year. some smaller opposition parties support the abe led reinterpretation of the constitution. but the leader of the main opposition democratic party is among those opposed. >> translator: i have pushed through the approval in closed door talks among the ruling coalition and without sufficient debate in the diet. we will fight on. >> the diet agreed to further discuss the issue on july 14 th and 15th. tom following approval of the reinterpretation. this is despite the diet not currently in session. some japanese are upset about the new policy. thousands of people headed to the prime minister's office to protest. the demonstrators started gathering on tuesday morning.
they stayed there until late afternoon when the cabinet gave its approval. some pointed to the article of the constitution that denounces war. they held up banners that said don't destroy article 9 of the constitution and don't go to war. >> translator: it's a very bad situation, the government is trying to change the policy through a cabinet decision. without any debate on the constitution. and without amending it. >> some lawyers are calling on government leaders to retract their decision. >> translator: we're extremely concerned about what will happen once the reinterpretation of the constitution takes place. how each government will interpret it and how they'll exercise the right to collective self-defense. >> members of the japan federation of bar associations point out the government is bound by the constitution. they say the cabinet has
effectively changed article 9 without thorough discussion among the people. they say this runs counter to the principals of constitutionalism. the editors of the british science journal nate says they have retracted papers. the leads author is a young japanese scientist. they say they have found several critical errors in the stimulus triggered acquisition. a researcher at japan's institute. the group said they used stimulus to reprogram mature animal cells into mature embryolike cells. the announcement attracted world attention, but many scientists began to question the findings of her papers. the study of stap cells has now been virtually cancelled and the fallout from the controversy has left some japanese scholars
trying to pick up the pieces. >> reporter: the announcement of stap cells in january shook scientists around the globe. they said the new method of reprogramming mature animal cell into embryo like cells could open a door to regenerative medicine and they thought it was ground breaking. this man was one of them. >> translator: it was surprising, the papers say the cells can become potent so easily and within such a short period of time. >> reporter: he tried to conduct the experiment the way described in the british journal. he used special cells that contained an indicator. the cells glowed green when one becomes capable of changing into other cell types.
and when they shown light on the cells, some of them glowed. it was exactly the result showed in previous papers. but they soon discovered something was wrong. when he used a different light, the cells glowed in red. the appropriate cells only glowed green. the cells glowed in various colors when they die. >> translator: i concluded that i didn't succeed in producing stap cells, it was just that the cells died. >> reporter: he took a look at the picture of a live image of s trk a -- stap. >> translator: we can see some liquid leaking from the cell. many of us concluded that phenomenon happens when the cell
is dead. >> reporter: the results of several experiments make him think that stap cells do not exist. but that's not his biggest concern. he feels the controversy has hurt the credibility of japan's scientific community badly. and he thinks the damage rate needs to be repaired. he and his colleagues tried to have more communication with people outside their circle.
he thinks direct and honest discussion with the general public is what has lacked in the japanese scientific community. >> translator: i like the meeting because the speaker described science in detail to us. i was happy i could hear such profound explanations from an actual skin tryst. >> i think many people take scientists as something only a handful of intelligent expers domination. but it's not curious things are happening in our bodies and learning it is an enormous excitement. i just want to offer chances to let more people know that.
>> reporter: he knows that gaining the trust is not easy to achieve. but he thinks this is one way to help them heal. security in afghanistan is deteriorating as its struggles through its first democratic transition of power. a suicide bomber attacked an air force bus in the capital. >> the bomber attacked the bus carrying military personnel on wednesday, the explosion killed at least 8 people and injured 16. the bomber approached the bus and when he was beside it, blew himself up. at least five of the dead were in the air force. the taliban has claimed responsibility saying the bus was the target. most international troops are scheduled to leave afghanistan
at the end of the year. the u.s. wants some of its forces to stay behind but it needs the approval of afghanistan's next president. afghanistan's election commission says it has postponed the release of preliminary results for the presidential runoff election as scheduled on wednesday. a senior election official says they plan to conduct a recount in nearly 2,000 polling stations. the runoff vote in june pitted former foreign minister against former finance minister. the first round was held in april. explaining the reason for the delay, the officials said the recount is needed to ensure the election's transparency. however criticism by abdullah of the commission is also believed to be a factor behind the move. abdullah accused the board of involvement in widespread ballot rigging and demanded a suspension of vote counting. the two candidates in the runoff election are supported by different ethnic groups. abdullah abdullah is mainly
supported by the minority. he enjoys support mainly in northern regions of afghanistan. gahni has broad support in the south and east. as confusion over the vote counting continues, afghanistan's ethnic divisions are growing more pronounced, possibly leading to tensions. >> reporter: supporters of african presidential candidates and former foreign minister gathered in the central of kabul to protest the election results. >> translator: the election commission is fraudulent and illegally fills the boxes with fake ballots. >> translator: they're hiding the legitimate votes of the afghan people and are involving everyone in their criminal activities. >> reporter: the protest was
sparked by a news conference held four days after the vote. he claimed that in some provinces the balloted outnumbered eligible voters. >> we have announced today that we don't have trust over the commission in their conduct and we are asking for the counting process to be stopped immediately. >> reporter: the count later released several videos and audio recordings as evidence of its allegations. there was a recorded telephone call they claim was between the head of the independent election commission secretariat and staff member of rival presidential candidate gahni. a speaker in the recording uses a code word staff sheaf meaning referring to illegally filled ballot boxes.
>> reporter: the camp also released a video which alleges the illegally filled ballot boxes the day before the voting. amid the allegation of election fraud, the heads of the iec secretary suddenly resigned, despite old charges. >> translator: today i offer my official resignation for the sake of my country. >> reporter: the resignation left the election commission without a key figure. taliban insurgents are intensifying the attacks as the crisis worsens.
in late june, about 1,000 taliban fighters attacked afghan security forces and government organizations in the southern helmand province. >> translator: there was heavy fighting between afghan security forces and the taliban who have been displaced by the situation. i hope the afghan forces will defeat the insurgents and the area will soon be career. >> reporter: u.s. military forces in afghanistan are training afghan security personnel to fight the taliban. in order to continue this training, an agreement must be reached between the u.s. and afghanistan. if the current crisis further delays the election process, it may affect u.s. plans. although citizens hope for a better future when casting their ballots, suspicions of fraud are
dampening their hopes. will afghanistan be able to move towards national reconstruction? the country is facing its moment of truth. india's former ministry summoned a senior u.s. diplomat after reports a u.-- earlier th week, "the washington post" reported that the national security agency in 2010 authorized surveillance on several foreign political parties, one of them was the party or byp, india's largest opposition party at the time. india's foreign ministry in new delhi summoned an official from the embassy and staged a protest. they called the alleged spying utterly unacceptable and demanded the u.s. give its assurance it won't happen again. the bjp is voicing grave concern.
>> such incidents run the risk of jeopardizing relationships between individuals, organizations and at times even nations. >> reporter: ties between india and the u.s. have been strained since the arrest and indictment of an indian diplomat in may of last year. the administration of president barack obama has been trying to improve ties with modi inviting him to visit the u.s. and that will wrap up our bulletin. police in hong kong have moved in on people staging a sit in to demand greater democracy. officers arrested more than 500 demonstrators. the previous day tens of thousands of people marched through the territory.
crowds filled the streets. on the 17th anniversary of hong kong's reaversion of shaen. they called on authorities in beijing to respect hong kong's autonomy. the organizer said the rally drew 510,000 people, an unprecedented number. the police say by their count, nearly 100,000 people showed up. more than 1,000 demonstrators, many of them young people, continued their protest after the main march ended. they staged a sit-in on roads in the financial district. police began removing them in the morning. officers said they were disrupting traffic and undermining public safety. many hong kong residents take part in protests on july 1st every year. they say they're worried over the chinese government's increased interference in hong kong's affairs. nuclear regulators around the world have been closely watching japan's attempts to cleanup the fukushima daichi plant. they have watched as the plant
operator struggles to cope with significant set backs. now a u.s. nuclear regulatory commissioner has checked out the site firsthand. >> reporter: william magwood is meeting with his japanese counterparts at tepco. he wants to talk about dealing with 400 tons of contaminated water. >> the issue of the water that's being released from the site is one that's troubled a lot of people. i have traveled to other countries throughout the region and even they are concerned about it. the japanese authorities have come up with an idea to use an ice wall to block that water, that's something that's a new idea. there are some questions that we have about it, we don't understand the entire idea. so we're going to get a briefing on that and hopefully learn a lot more about it. >> reporter: tepco engineers admit that despite the efforts to decontaminate the wastewater,
magwood is optimistic that the actual damage to the environment could be relative lay small depending on how its released. >> the process is they are removing the most dangerous radioactive elements from the water. it is probably possible to carefully release it over time in a way that does not damage the environment and doesn't endanger human health. i don't know what japanese plans are for releasing that water, but i believe it can be done safely.
>> reporter: experts say that the most difficult challenges of decommissioning the plant is removing debris left in the reactors during the meltdown. he says there's no magic wand to wipe out this problem. >> i think people have to be realistic about how difficult this is, how long it's going to take. during my visit to japan this week, people have asked me from time to time, are there technologies in the u.s. that can help solve this problem? the reality is that there is no technology anywhere to solve this problem. it has to be developed, but clearly there's fantastic experts in japan and around the world that can work together to find a good solution. >> reporter: magwood says he warms wants to inge vit hazy counter parts and officials from japan's nuclear regulation authority to the u.s. commission so they can see how decisions are made there.
>> we do business a bit differently than they do, as you noted. for example in the nuclear regulatory commission, we work on a voting basis. we haven't really seen that with nra, mostly it seems that things come out in more of a consensus fashion. we think that kind of debate is healthy and it's important. but i have to convince other people, and i think that's a good process. so that's the sort of thing we can discuss with our counterparts to see if they're interested in how we do business. >> reporter: u.s. authorities are always ready to extend further support to japan. he's visiting fukushima daichi again on wednesday. the first named storm of the atlantic hurricane season is gaining strength. our meteorologist, robert speta, is here with the latest on arthur. robert? >> yes, let's first start talking about the tropical system that very well could become the first hurricane of the 2014 season in the atlantic bay sin.
you can see it's continuing to move slowly off to the north. convection still remaining on the eastern periphery. i wouldn't be surprised if we do see a few stray thunderstorms cause some problems along the eastern coastlines of florida. actually at this time, tropical storm watches are in effect out there, because this does push off to the north, expect it to become a hurricane that's why hurricane watches are in effect around cape hatteras and basically up and down the north carolina coastline. definitely if you are in any of these areas in the oranges, just be ready for the possibility of some evacuations by your local authorities there, as this does continuing to move off to the north. as we look ahead, this is eventually going to impact those of you into washington, d.c., new york, you could be seeing some heavy rain and high winds. before that happens, we actually have some severe thunderstorm rolling across new york and washington, d.c. we have a cold front pushing through and that's going to be helping pull this north. behind it, high pressure is setting in, that's actually ushering in some rather cool
temp chur -- temperatures, death definitely well below normal. if you're out there in chicago, head out for the fourth of july weekend, only a high of 19 there on your wednesday. back to the west, opposite scenario, it is very dry in the southwest in death valley. there's a reason why they call it death valley. 52 degrees there, expected on your wednesday, absolutely scorching. let's go out towards india now, rain showers still out here in the east actually flooding very well likely in eastern india. but i want to concentrate on rain now towards the west where the monsoon has not set in yet. it's been causing some problems. let's take a look at video out of western india where the monsoon is delayed there and its causing problems for farmers in the region. the lack of rainfall is threatening cotton, soybean and sugar cane crops in the western provinces.
in these rain deprived areas, rainfall was down nearly 90%. now the biggest problem is because of lack of irrigation out here. a lot of farmers count on the timing of the monsoon. what we are seeing at this time is that timing is very late and i'll take a look at this chart, actually. you can see where it is rain now and by july 1, it should have crossed the entirety of india has that has not happened. and pennsylvania in the east, rain, and also off toward the north but not in the western provinces. a new low pressure center is developing off the coast of china. let's see what's going on in the eastern portions of asia. showers across korea, western portions of japan. as much as 200 millimeters could very well fall. on friday morning if you're in tokyo, have an umbrella ready, this rain is going to push ahead. mean while is southwest monsoon is going to kick off around guam.
that's going to be enhancing the monsoon. every time we talk about that u we talk about that threat of flooding in the philippines, so that's something you want to watch over the next several days. that's a look at our weather, here's the extended forecast. that's news line for this hour. i'm gene otani in tokyo. from all of us here at nhk world, thank you for joining us